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Just in Time for the Weekend

August 30, 2013 – Bay Area

(Click on the photo to enlarge it.)

Worried you would be stuck without fresh reading material for the long Labor Day Weekend? Fret not, sweet reader! The September Latitude 38 is on its way to marina and chandleries all over the Bay Area today. Photo Latitude / Annie
© 2018 Latitude 38 Media, LLC

Forecasters tell us the Bay Area will see splendid weather over the Labor Day weekend — ideal for spending time on the water and destressing from the pressures of the workaday world. We like to think that one excellent way to destress (besides sailing) is to lose yourself in the pages of Latitude 38. And as luck would have it, the September edition is hot off the press, and is being distributed today all along the West Coast. 

In it, you'll find a preview of this month's America's Cup Finals, a report on why we're bullish on the Red Bull Youth America's Cup, tips and advice from international cruisers on doing the Pacific Puddle Jump, mini-profiles on Baja Ha-Ha 20 participants, coverage of all sorts of local racing events, dozens of cruiser chronicles from around the globe and more. 

The complete September edition will also be available early this afternoon to read online, or download for free as an eBook. So have a great weekend and happy reading!

- latitude / andy

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Classy Deadline the 15th

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AC Jury's Decision Delayed

August 30, 2013 – San Francisco

A five-member international sailing jury is continuing to hear testimony today regarding allegations of cheating by Oracle Team USA staff during the America's Cup World Series. Their decision regarding punishment, if any, is expected to come early next week.

The five-judge jury looked happy and carefree when they posed for this photo, but the thorny task before them could have very serious implications on the Cup's reputation. Pictured, are David Tillett (Chairman), John Doerr, Josje Hofland, Graham McKenzie, Bryan Willis. © 2018 ACEA / Gilles Martin-Raget

Without going into specific details, OTUSA has already publicly acknowledged wrongdoing and relinquished their ACWS victories. The question before the jury, however, is how much the America's Cup 34 defender should be penalized. At issue is the alleged breaking of AC Protocol Article 60, which addresses protecting the reputation of the Cup, and Racing Rule 69, having to do with gross misconduct.

Penalties imposed on the team could range from a slap on the wrist (i.e. banning some members of the shore staff from further involvement in the Cup), to dinging OTUSA by a couple of points in the AC Finals, to forfeiture of the title. We can not imagine the latter happening, as there is just too much at stake financially for all concerned, and handing down a harsh penalty would likely do more harm to the AC's fragile reputation than the alleged cheating itself.

Although the jurors are undoubtedly beyond reproach, they are under tremendous pressure not to elevate this mini-scandal to a higher level. In fact, they have asked America's Cup Event Authority CEO Stephen Barclay to submit a financial assessment of the economic impact on the Cup and its backers, if cheating is proven. He should know — a former Oracle exec, he is now head of Core Builders Composites in New Zealand, which produced all of the AC45s and at least one of the wing masts. (CBC is an Oracle subsidiary.)

Since the very beginning, controversy has always been a part of the America's Cup, and this incarnation of the 162-year-old contest is certainly no exception. We're sure most readers agree with us when we say that we are extremely anxious to get beyond the off-the-course controversies, and on to the main event: cutting-edge, boat-on-boat racing. Unlike the just-completed Louis Vuitton Cup races, we anticipate that the AC Finals will be closely contested — and thrilling to watch. Race one is slated to begin September 7.

- latitude / andy

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Labor Day Weekend Happenings

August 30, 2013 – Sausalito and Beyond

On the odd chance you don't have much going on this weekend, here are a few events you might want to check out over the next few days:

  • The artists have once again decended on Marin County for the 61st annual Sausalito Art Festival. Nearly 300 artists from all over the country will display their works — from paintings to photographs to sculptures and more — at Marinship Park (next door to the Bay Model) starting tomorrow and running through Monday. Premier maritime artist — and the America's Cup artist in residence — Jim DeWitt will again be featuring his America's Cup artwork, along with some other of his favorite pieces, in Booth #102. 

  • Jim DeWitt (in red) and family will be showing his AC art at the Sausalito Art Festival this weekend. Photo Latitude / LaDonna
    © 2018 Latitude 38 Media, LLC

  • At the entrance to the Festival, you'll notice one enormous tent that will house the Educational Tall Ship, a Matthew Turner-inspired brigantine, that will eventually become San Francisco's official tallship. Director Alan Olson and crew are getting ready to lay the keel of the ship soon, but for the next few days the ETS site will act as the gateway to the Art Festival. Tours will be offered and the infamous Waterfront Pickers — featuring our very own 'Banjo Andy' Turpin — will be playing Monday, 1-3 p.m.

  • Check out the raw materials and building site of the Educational Tall Ship at the entrance to the Art Festival. © 2018 Educational Tall Ship

  • Well-known local artist Roderick 'Smitty' Smith will be painting a marine mural on one of the ETS containers during the Art Festival. Smitty's work can be seen around the waterfront, typically on the transoms of boats, but his more inspired pieces are hung (or painted) on walls. His delightfully realistic 'antiqued' life rings featuring the names of famous boats will be on display (and for sale) at the ETS site.

  • Smitty's retro liferings are beautiful works of art. © 2018 John Skoriak

  •  Next Wednesday, September 4, the Sausalito Historical Society will host a party at the Ice House Visitors Center (780 Bridgeway) at 6 p.m. to celebrate the launch of Sausalito Sets Sail, a new self-guided walking tour along the waterfront. The tour will include interpretive panels and a special exhibit on the top floor of City Hall (420 Litho). 

  • Baja-bound folk should mark their calendars for our Mexico-Only Crew List Party on September 4. Photo Latitude / Andy
    © 2018 Latitude 38 Media, LLC

  • Of course, if you're heading for Mexico this fall — or you want to — you'll have to scoot over to the other side of the Bay on September 4 for Latitude's annual Mexico-Only Crew List Party at Encinal YC, 6-9 p.m. It's a terrific opportunity for skippers to find an extra pair or two of eyeballs for those tiring night watches. Paid 2013 Baja Ha-Ha skippers and first mates get in for free; everyone else pays just $7. Snacks, no-host bar and cruiser-friendly vendors will be there to answer your questions. (Also, don't forget to check out the Mexico Cruising Seminar presented by Paradise Village Marina Manager Dick Markie and Marina El Cid's Geronimo Cevallos downstairs at the club starting at 4 p.m.)

- latitude / ladonna

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Weekend Racing Preview

August 30, 2013 – Northern California and London, UK

CYC Friday Night Race
The sun is setting on CYC's scenic Friday night series. Photo Latitude / John A.
© 2018 Latitude 38 Media, LLC

Front and center on the San Francisco Cityfront this weekend, will be the first-ever Red Bull Youth America's Cup which runs Sunday through Wednesday (September 1-4), and promises to present some of the most exciting competition of the so-called Summer of Racing — as it involves 10 young teams from around the world fleet racing (rather than match racing) on speedy AC45 cats. 

Corinthian YC's final beer can race tonight is a non-counter, and awards for the series will be handed out afterward, around 8:45 p.m. Organizers promise "music, bragging, giant beer glasses." Todos Santos will play from 5:15 to 9:45 p.m., and free beer will flow upon the sounding of the final finish horn.

Beer can racing will grease our skids for the slide into Labor Day Weekend. For a long (but no doubt incomplete) list of holiday weekend regattas, see last week's preview.

Qingdao at the dock
The Clipper 70 fleet lines St. Katharine Docks in London awaiting the start of their maiden circumnavigation on Sunday. © 2018 /

The Clipper Round the World Race starts Sunday from London. The fleet of 12 new Clipper 70s will make landfall at San Francisco's South Beach Harbor in April, 2014, after a month spent crossing the Pacific Ocean from Qingdao, China. Follow them around at

Back in Tiburon, CYC's speaker series continues on Thursday, September 5 with Richard Jenkins, who holds the world record for Land Speed Sailing — an astounding 126 mph. Just imagine the adrenaline rush! Free, but you must RSVP. You'll find details and registration at

Hobies in the park
The Art Festival will depart and the cat sailors will take over Sausalito next week. © 2018 /

Has the whole Bay gone cat crazy? Sausalito YC will be herding cats when the U.S. Multihull Championship for the Hobie Alter Cup starts September 5, with a special guest expert clinic on September 4. On September 7, the Hobie 16s will race on the America’s Cup course  as the opening act to the first race of the America’s Cup Finals. Among notable competitors this year is five-time Hobie 16 National Champion Hobie Alter Jr. and his son/crew Scott Alter of San Juan Capistrano.

The Kip Lar Rieu Stampede Laser Fleet Championships, part of Svendsens Grand Prix, will be held at Stampede Reservoir near Truckee, with a fun sail and taco feed on September 6 and racing on September 7-8. A group campsite is reserved for the regatta. See


- latitude / chris

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